I've spent a great few weeks with the kids on vacation up in Washington. I spent enough time there that I feel like I'm going back to my chameleon ways - you know, the lizard that is known for blending in with it's environment. I adapted to the great northwest again, tossing my Southern California ways aside. I had given up my sequins and high heels for plaid and comfort shoes. I was starting to feel the urge to trade in my BMW for a gas friendly hybrid.
Sequins and bright colors just announce to the public that you aren't actually from the area anyway - natives come equipped with skin so white from lack of sunshine, who needs to compete with clothes that also glitter and glow? My teenager actually commented that he'd never seen so many pale people in his life. Nothing wrong with that - as we become preternaturally wrinkled from extended sun exposure where we live, Seattlites will be popping their vitamin D tablets and having the last laugh.
I did find that my urge to wear plaid was kind of like the same feeling you get when you go on holiday somewhere like Disneyland. You walk into a gift shop and think the Mickey Mouse emblazoned outfits are cute. Only do you realize when you put on that tuxedo jacket with the tiny Mickey heads all over the fabric does it not work anywhere outside of the Happiest Place on Earth.
I have to say it's tough to pack for three weeks away from home when you have five kids. You think that the Chevy Suburban has a vast amount of space until you load up suitcases, scooters, hockey gear, coolers and snack food. Then you realize that clothing options have to be restricted. And as the kids get older, their clothes get bigger and less outfits can be packed. I'm limited to four of each item, even for me - shirts, pants, sweaters and shoes. That means I need to be smart about my clothing choices for extended wearabilty - I'm limited to grey and brown - the colors of dirt and grubby fingers.
It's been so nice to hang out with family and friends - go to the local lake and catch tadpoles, visit playground's and eat meals together. Fill our gullets with as much great roadside lattes and copper river salmon as possible before making the trek back to the sunny, but dusty brown inland area where we live in SoCal. Thanks Washington, for being incredibly green, amazingly only cloudy with a very few showers and full of tasty food and beverages.